The academic team behind Vote Compass looked at party policy statements and platform documents from the Greens, Liberals, New Democrats and Progressive Conservatives, and consulted the parties to determine how their policies lined up with the way Vote Compass interprets respondents' answers.
All the parties had the chance to answer the Vote Compass questionnaire for themselves, and were given the opportunity to challenge the assessments before the "final codes" went in. The detailed methodology is available here.
Here are the party positions on one questions about transit in the Vote Compass questionnaire, and what was behind those answers.
1) The provincial government should freeze public transit fares.
- Strongly agree
- Somewhat agree
- Neither agree nor disagree
- Somewhat disagree
- Strongly disagree
- Don’t know
New Democratic Party: Strongly agree
For thousands of people who can’t afford to drive, and thousands more who are hoping to get out of their cars, public transit is expensive and time-consuming.
Around the world other national and state governments work with municipalities to make public transit affordable and reliable but in Ontario the commitment has been minimal and inconsistent. We will share the cost of operating transit equally with municipalities.
In exchange for this new commitment, we will require municipalities to freeze transit fares at current levels for four years. We will also invest in new transit projects and upgrades for public transit systems.
Green Party of Ontario: Neutral
The provincial government should continue to invest in public transportation and ensure it is affordable for users. The Green Party supports tax credits for public transit users, and further funding for active transportation including public transit.
Progressive Conservatives: Neutral
Tim Hudak government will test all proposed road and transit projects with one question: will they move more people or goods, more quickly, while being a good deal for the people who are paying for them? We will invest more than $35 billion to pay for new infrastructure – much of it in transit and transportation – over our first three years in office and use innovative technologies to help reduce congestion...We will stop the war on the car. Our transportation policy needs to be a balance between public transportation and the cars we drive.
Transit fares are set by each municipality. Ontario Liberals believe that Ontario needs effective and efficient public transit services to help foster a clean environment and a vibrant economy.
We support municipalities in their efforts to develop an integrated transportation system which includes expanding public transit. After years of neglect by previous governments, in 2003 we got to work on investing in public transit - over ten billion dollars to communities across the province.
The Ontario Liberals delivered on our commitment to provide 2 cents per litre of provincial gas tax revenues as a source of long-term, sustainable funding for public transit. That funding has provided 120 communities with 93 municipal transit services almost two billion dollars to improve and upgrade transit.
Unlike the PCs and the NDP, we believe in dedicated funding to support municipal public transit. That’s why we've committed $600M to Ottawa for their rapid transit plan in addition to our $300M commitment to Region of Waterloo for local rapid transit.
When other parties were in power, they did little to support public transit and both the Tories and the NDP voted against our provincial budgets that included dedicated funding for municipal transit projects. The Ontario Liberals believe in investment in public transit – it means people are spending less time waiting for transit, more time with families and enjoying a more accessible service than ever before.